More work needs to be done to equip pharmacists and their teams with the knowledge, skills and attitudes to mitigate the threat of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and foster antimicrobial stewardship (AMS), says the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) in a new report.
Published to coincide with World Antimicrobial Resistance Awareness Week (18-24 November), the ‘Antimicrobial resistance and stewardship education‘ report is based on a survey of pharmacy educators, practitioners and students from 81 countries worldwide.
It aims ‘to provide insights, recommendations and strategies for the effective education of pharmaceutical professionals in the realm of AMR‘, allowing FIP to ‘drive positive change on a global scale‘.
Citing education and training as fundamental pillars in the fight against AMR, the report highlights the importance of fully integrating this key topic into the pharmacy curriculum as well as focusing on continuous professional development in an area that is constantly evolving.
When it comes to improving the pharmacy curricula, the report‘s survey found pharmacogenomics, record-keeping, prescription scrutiny and adverse event investigation to be areas where enhancements are most needed.
Case studies from countries such as Croatia, Ireland and Norway are also included to exemplify various approaches to addressing AMR and inspire action, as well as highlighting the challenges that still need to be overcome.
The importance of interdisciplinary collaboration, tailored educational initiatives and practical experience in combating AMR effectively are all outlined.
The report concludes by detailing several ‘pathways‘ that pharmacy stakeholders should consider when supporting students and colleagues to bolster AMR awareness and action around appropriate antimicrobial use, infection prevention and diagnostic stewardship skills.
In the report‘s executive summary, Catherine Duggan said: ‘In my role as CEO of FIP, I strongly urge all stakeholders to take heed of the insights and recommendations outlined in this report.
We are fully committed to supporting pharmaceutical workforce development and actively contributing to the global mission of combating AMR.
‘Together, let us seize the opportunity to make a tangible and transformative difference in addressing this crucial healthcare challenge aligned with the FIP Development Goals.‘
Professor Cátia Caneiras, co-chair of the FIP commission on AMR and co-author of the report, added: ‘The time to act is now, and by equipping the pharmaceutical workforce, we can collectively forge a more resilient future against the threat of AMR.
‘This transformation will empower the pharmaceutical workforce to become proactive advocates and agents of change in combating AMR.‘